5 Ways to Foster an Employee Centric Culture

Let’s define an Employee Centric Culture. It’s an organization that does the following

  • Puts their employees first
  • Creates open communication and encourages feedback
  • Creates an environment that is safe and motivating
  • Creates a healthy workplace environment

When organizations take this approach they create a workplace that is Happy & Engaging.

So why does happiness and engagement even matter? Does it really do anything besides creating positivity? Yes it does– you can expect the following results:

  • Increased employee retention
  • Increased productivity
  • Increased customer satisfaction
  • Increased sales

It’s a no-brainer to want to foster an Employee Centric Culture, but how do you do it? 

Here are five easy tips:

  1. Gather Employee Feedback and Act on It
  2. Improve Your Total Rewards
  3. Create Growth Opportunities
  4. Focus on Well-being
  5. Create Trust

Gather Employee Feedback and Act on It

Listen to your employees and work with them to improve the workplace. This can be done in a formal sense of conducting employee engagement surveys, stay interviews or exit interviews. You can also spend more time asking your employees how the company can improve the workplace. Make sure to act on the information or else trust will be lost.

Improve Your Total Rewards

Be sure to have a total rewards strategy that meets the needs of your employees. Measure our employees’ needs – work life balance, education, pay, bonuses, etc. Create a strategy and work with your employees to empower them to understand their worth. It is important to compare your offer with the industry benchmarks or those offered by competitors to ensure fairness.

Create Growth Opportunities

You want to hire employees that want to grow, improve, and make a real difference. In order to retain them you will need to create those opportunities. This is why Performance Development  Plans should be created. These plans should encourage training, peer mentoring, and feedback. 

Focus on Well-Being

Employee wellness comes in many different forms – physical, mental, emotional, and financial. You need to look after your employees and take care of them. The importance of health and safety, wellness plans, and a healthy workplace culture cannot be overstated. You should even teach your employees about conflict management, personality profiling, emotional intelligence, rules of engagement, and your core values. The best way to reinforce these values and rules is to lead by example.

Create Trust

Trust is everything and without it an Employee Centric Culture is not possible. Trust can be difficult to build and easy to lose. Depending on the level of trust you have in your workplace, this may take time to improve. The best way to improve trust is to simply listen to your employees, take their concerns into account, and make real changes in the workplace. This could be something as small as casual Fridays or as big as an overhaul of your compensation programs. Transparency is key here–how can you expect employees to be open and honest with you if you are not open and honest with them?

Creating an Employee Centric Culture is essential for success. Often organizations that are not employee centric struggle to survive with high turnover, lower productivity, and lower customer satisfaction. Organizations that are growing and successful are almost always very employee centric. Take care of your employees and they will take care of you.  

Reach out to us if you want to have a chat to see how we can help you create a more Employee Centric Culture. 
Contact Chad at: chad@peoplestuffnl.ca or (709) 697-2423.

As a Startup or Entrepreneur, do you need HR?

Founders work hard for long hours to get their business up and running. Often during that time HR and company culture gets forgotten

25% of startups fail because they don’t have the right team.

CB Insights

Startups need a dedicated HR representative early to attract and retain top talent. This is crucial to future business growth.

Another important factor for many startups is securing investments or loans. Banks and investors look for employee retention rates to determine the leadership team’s effectiveness.

A startup may be able to find a shortcut to business growth, but shortcuts are detrimental when it comes to managing people.

What does HR do in a startup?

  • Set up the necessary HR policies and processes
  • Grow the right team with the right people
  • Ensure legal compliance
  • Improve employee engagement and well-being
  • Build a diverse and inclusive work environment
  • Prepare the company for growth

Here are 7 areas People Stuff Inc. will focus on when working with a startup or entrepreneur

1. Strategy

The first step we take in creating an HR department is learning about the business and developing a corresponding HR strategy. We take the time to listen to the startup founders, the leadership team, and the employees to understand the business. These conversations enable us to get familiar with the product or service offered, the target audience, the industry, and the overall strategy. 

2. HR Essentials

The next step involves setting up the necessary HR policies and procedures. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Recruitment
  • Employee contracts
  • Hours of work & overtime
  • Employee leave policy
  • Code of conduct
  • Anti-harassment
  • Employee performance development
  • Accountability & Disciplinary procedure
  • Termination Records & Processes
  • Health and workplace safety policies
  • Social media policy
  • Drugs and alcohol policy
  • Further policies and procedures can be developed based on the business’s needs

3. Be Employee-centric

The danger when in startup mode is the hyperfocus on the product and potential customers. Although this is essential, paying attention to the employees who build your product and are helping to achieve your vision is just as, if not more important. 

We help you understand your employee’s needs and shape your policies to ensure these are met while maintaining the overall strategy and goals of the business. 

We give your employees a voice, get to know them better, find out what motivates them, and create a learning and development plan.

The most successful startups build employee-centric cultures that stress growth and development. 

4. Establish a Recruitment Process

We help you establish processes and understand what your pull is. As you grow, it’s essential to have a solid recruitment process that meets the needs of the recruiters and candidates. This enables you to hire the right people for your company while fostering a culture that supports the organizational vision.

5. Establish an Orientation Process

We help create a structured and repeatable orientation process. Many startup companies fail to provide new employees with clear, formal working agreements. This is required by law and is a key step in ensuring your employees are happy at work and have peace of mind. 

6. Start Building Your HR Systems

The following are a few core systems that we recommend attaining and help setup

  • Workforce management system
  • Human Resources Information System (HRIS)
  • Learning and development systems
  • Performance management systems

7. Build your HR function with DEIB in Mind

We ensure diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) when creating policies and processes and during the hiring journey. This helps build diversity in the startup from the beginning, while setting a precedent for an environment where all employees feel welcome, supported, safe, and respected regardless of gender, religion, ethnicity, or sexual orientation. This leads to happier and better-performing employees. As you scale your startup, this will make it easier to attract diverse candidates.

What is People Analytics and How is it Evolving?

People analytics is the practice of collecting and applying organizational, people, and talent data to improve critical business outcomes. It enables HR departments to develop data-driven insights to make decisions on talent, workforce processes and turn them into actionable insights to improve the performance of an organization. 

The future of people analytics

Here are five predictions about where people analytics is heading in the near future:

  1. People analytics is going to create supercharged organizations that can make real-time decisions with high accuracy.
  2. HR teams will have to create a balance between technology and the people. As people analytics advances, HR leaders will be challenged to find the human spirit in the organization and the HR function.
  3. Soon, it will be possible for organizations to predict when employees are looking for a new job and who will the future talent be.
  4. Language analytics will also allow leaders to ask AI-enabled technologies questions about employees. The best answer would surface by searching an entire database of past employee data and making a decision.
  5. Talent analytics will enable HR practitioners to identify and nurture potential future leaders.

As the work world continues to evolve HR will play a different role and people analytics and digital HR will be a necessity.

How to Conduct Terminations

If you own a company, you need to be ok with terminating employees. It’s never easy but it is a necessity if you want to ensure you are working with the right people. Some owners hate it so much they just hope their broken relationship employee quits. That’s not the answer and will cause even more problems.

We can all agree that an employee has a right to leave and take another job, so why is the opposite so difficult? The key is to do it right and do it with respect. Here are a few tips.

Prepare Your Paperwork

I recommend putting things into writing even when you are not legally required. It makes it clear and allows the employee to read things over when they leave the meeting. I suggest having two copies of everything and placing one copy in a sealed envelop or package for taking away. It’s helpful to have a package ready for the employee for when they leave and things sink in.

Find a Quite and Confidential Place

Conduct the meeting in a place that is quiet and private. Terminations can be emotional, so a quiet place will allow the employee to ask questions or be emotional without being embarrassed.

The Process Should be Quick

The decision should be final with no room for negotiation or changing your mind. Based on that the message should be quick and to the point. Don’t beat around the bush or search for feedback from the employee. Provide the message, review the letter and help them leave the premises with dignity.

The Employee Should be the First to Know

Besides the manager/owner, the employee should be the first to hear the news. No one else in the office should know. I have witnessed situations where everyone in the office knows the termination is coming and the employee is the last to know. This should never be the case; tell the employee and update the team after. It’s important to tell the team after and ensure it doesn’t become a water cooler conversation. Any concerns or questions should be kept to a minimum and addressed by the manager or HR.

Be Prepared for Emotional Reactions, but do not React

It will come as a shock to the employee so expect emotions such as anger, crying, laughing, diversion, finger-pointing, etc. The key is to let it happen, within reason, and don’t react. For example, if the employee says “it’s doesn’t matter, I never liked you anyway and you are a terrible manager”, do not respond or fuel the fire. Give the employee the benefit of the doubt. Your role is to give the message, support the employee and get them to finish up.

Have HR Support or a 3rd Party Expert

A great method is to have the manager deliver the message and then turn it over to an HR person to handle the details. This takes the manager out of the equation and the HR person becomes the support person. The HR person should also follow up later that day or the next day to ensure the employee is doing ok or answer any questions.

These are just a few tips. In the end, if performed correctly and with respect, the person will recover and hopefully learn to accept and move on. Being terminated shouldn’t have shame and like most relationships, there is a beginning and an endpoint. If you do need assistance or 3rd party support with a termination reach out to us at chad@peoplestuffnl.ca or (709) 697-2423

Terminations and Sick Leave

One point we often consult with clients on is terminations. I always start off my conversations with the following. You have a right to terminate any employee at any time and for almost any reason, if you provide the appropriate notice or pay in lieu thereof.

When it comes to terminating an employee on sick leave if the reason for terminating them is not related to their sick leave, then you may terminate. Restructuring, poor performance, or downsizing are acceptable grounds regardless of an employee’s health status.

Employee Rights

The other part you need to consider is to accommodate an employee’s need for sick leave. It can be challenging and frustrating, but you cannot terminate an employee on sick leave for inconveniencing your business. As an employer, you must accommodate a sick employee to the point of Undue Hardship. This could be modifying their hours, accommodating doctor appointments, or providing sick leave.

There are two factors you need to consider is Human Rights Legislation that prohibits the termination of an employee based on discrimination against a protected group (such as people with a disability). Furthermore, an employee can not be terminated for exercising his or her legal rights (such as their right to take sick leave).

If a tribunal finds that your employee’s leave was part of the decision to terminate, then you will be ordered to compensate the dismissed employee for damages suffered.

Other Factors

Terminating an employee on sick leave can cause internal and external issues. People will question the reasons and you may need to demonstrate the legitimacy of the termination. Ensure you have documented proof and support to show your dismissal decision. Always document poor performance or behaviour as it occurs. You should be able to show that their termination was already being discussed before the employee went on leave.

If you need any assistance or insight into dealing with employee sick leave or terminations, please reach to People Stuff at (709) 697-2423 or chad@peoplestuffnl.ca

The Importance of Skills Assessment Testing During the Recruitment Process

People Stuff offers Skills Assessment Testing as part of our recruitment process. It brings recruitment to a whole new level of accuracy, insight and removing biases. Here are three important reasons to use Skills Assessmet Testing

1. Skills Assessment Testing is more objective

Rely on objective data to make better hiring decisions. Skills Assessment Testing can provide you with standardised, useful insights on candidates and predict job performance and company fit. By using this data to identify and hire the right candidate you’ll also improve overall productivity and effectiveness of your teams.

Unlike face to face interviews, Skills Assessment Testing allows you to assess a wide range of applicable skills and personality traits. It allows you to assess various characteristics of the candidate such as: cognitive ability, strategic thinking, subject-area knowledge, confidence, problem solving ability, leadership ability, agreeableness, organisational skills, helpfulness, analytical skills, risk-taking, productivity, initiative, honesty, people-skills, reliability, positivity, empathy, collaboration, etc.

2. Skills Assessment Testing increases employee retention

As important as hiring the right candidate, it’s crucial for companies to retain talent and reduce turnover. With Skills Assessment Testing, you can screen candidates more efficiently for aptitude and personality and assess whether a candidate is likely to stay in the role and fit in with the company culture.

To assess if candidates are fit for a position, there are many factors that can be considered such as passion for learning; overall ambition; ownership and initiative; empathy; communication skills; critical thinking skills; collaboration skills; honesty; motivation; curiosity; etc. Screening for these skills during a standard face-to-face interview can be really difficult.

Employees that aren’t the right fit for a job will eventually underperform in terms of engagement with the role and productivity and, thus, are more likely to leave. And as you well know, replacing a bad hire can be very expensive and time-consuming. But Skills Assessment Testing can reduce costs on hiring and training costs by providing you with data that will help you hire the right people for a position the first time.

Contrary to what people normally think, Skills Assessment Testing can increase the legal defensibility of your hiring process, when used correctly. The use of Skills Assessment Testing testing and assessment has to follow the same guidelines as any other hiring selection method (including resumes, interviews, etc.)

These guidelines state that Skills Assessment Testing are completely legal to use as long as they are job-related. Tests have an additional layer of legal defensibility due to the fact that they provide employers with objective, scientifically validated predictors of success in a job, in opposition to other subjective hiring methods. These actually gives companies a chance to better defend their hiring procedures if someone questions their hiring process legality.

Give us a call if you want to learn more about our Skills Assessment Testing during our recruitment process. Chad@peoplestuffnl.ca or (709) 697-2423

3 Suggestions to Create an Inclusive Workplace

In honour of this being pride week, there is no better time to take a step back and evaluate your company’s diversity and inclusivity. There are many different ways you can create an inclusive workplace. Here are 3 suggestions. 

1. Learn about your own social identity and biases.

Your social identity is a reflection of who you are based on your membership of certain groups. You can take quizzes such as a privilege check quiz and implicit bias quiz to see how your own opinions may be. Biases can be both conscious and unconscious so the best way to improve is to learn more about your personal biases. Below are a few links of examples of  a bias quiz and a privilege quiz. 

2, Create groups at work to help with the inclusivity of the work environment

This is a great method to help prevent any type of discrimination and build an inclusive environment. A great example is to form a committee to create social accountability and to commit to creating a diverse, inclusive and equitable environment. This committee incorporates all groups who wish to participate and is all-encompassing.

3. Diversity and inclusion training for the workplace

There are many different options that you can choose from when deciding to conduct diversity and inclusion training. This is a great way to get all employees involved and get educated about what is acceptable and promoted in the workplace. 

Diversity and inclusion is an integral part of any successful business. Companies with diversity and inclusion in mind foster a positive work environment for all employees and make them feel heard and valued. This will only help to improve engagement and lower turnover. With these three suggestions, you can help with the inclusivity and betterment of the company. Whether you are an employee or manager you have a personal stake in the advancement and achievements of the organization. 

These 35 Questions Can Help You Find Out What Privilege Is And How Privileged You Are https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hD5f8GuNuG


P!nk Incorporated – 5 Reasons For Her Company’s Success

Yesterday I watching a documentary on the singer P!nk and I was blown away. I must admit I wasn’t someone who cherished her music, but I now understand, admire and dare I say, now I am a fan.

P!nk, is a successful business that has over 250 employees and Alecia Beth Moore (P!ink) is an amazing CEO. She has over 250 engaged employees who live and breath her brand. She is one of highest paid performers on the planet and is worth $200 Million. So how does P!nk do it? Here are five reasons she is killing it.

1 – She Hire’s Employees With Better Skills Than Her

P!nk surrounds herself with the best people with many different skills. She’s not intimidated, learns from others, and wants others to succeed. She is successful because she parks her ego and works with people to find mutual value.

2 – She Leads by Example and Not by Authority

P!ink will often say “I don’t need to be a bitch to get people to work together”. She gets others to perform by leading the way and working just as hard as everyone else. She’s a hard worker, positive, grateful and a risk taker.

3 – She has Created and Lives a Successful Brand

Her brand is strong, and people naturally gravitate towards it. Individuality, confidence, fun, positivity, living life and embracing that you are different. It’s all about being you and not worrying about what others think of you. She has helped so many people who have struggled with her music.

4 – She Hire’s Employees Who Match her Brand

Her brand wouldn’t succeed if she didn’t ensure the other 250 employees supported, lived, and matched those values. Everyone is expected to give their best, be positive, be supportive and work hard. She demands this and still allows others to be who they are.

5 – She Expects More from Everyone While Creating Trust

P!ink will state “I don’t want a guitarist I want Justin” or “I don’t a drummer I want Mark”. She is loyal to her people because she took the time to pick them and grow with them. Everyone is expected to give their all, have fun, be positive and be grateful. The energy needs to be high, and the shows must be life changing. It’s a high bar but she wouldn’t expect anything less from herself.

Companies can learn a lot in how she runs her business. Her success was not easy, and she works on it everyday. Branding, leading by example, hiring employees who match the HR brand, and creating core values that her team must live by. This documentary struck a chord with me as this is what we create when we work with our clients. Trying to tour the world and perform for 80,000 people a night or building a team to sell products or services to the public. These five keys to success are important.

-People Stuff Inc. (709) 697-2423 or chad@peoplestuffnl.ca

5 Wellness Tips for the Work-From-Home Lifestyle

During the past few months, many of us have been able to take advantage of the perks of physical workspaces and the social benefits of working from the office.  However, with the current global events happening in our world, and in accordance with the recent Alert Level 5 lockdown in NL, most of us have now been asked to combine our work and home lives once again. 

Though we’ve been through this before, and some of us have been enjoying remote work throughout the whole pandemic, adjusting to a complete work-from-home lifestyle can be a challenge for anyone – whether you’ve been practicing it since last March, or have recently been asked to work from home again. During these challenging times, we all need a few reminders to help us stay well. With that, here are 5 tips to help you manage your wellness while working from home. 

1. Stretch it out!

Sitting at your home office, or even worse – on your couch at home – most of us do not have the same ergonomically advanced technology such as chairs, mouses, etc. that ensure that we are properly taking care of our physical bodies. Taking a 5-minute stretch break every couple of hours to ensure we are giving our bodies the break it needs from our less-than-practical sitting positions is super important. 

So take one right now – be sure to give special love and attention to your wrists, hands, neck, back, and shoulders especially if you’re on a computer all day.

2. Don’t cut the chit-chat.

People are social beings. If you are currently now working from home, chances are the amount of socialization you are getting while you are working from home is significantly less than it would be working from an office. But scientific studies show that socialization is an essential part of staying happy and well. 
So don’t feel bad for taking a few minutes out of your zoom/phone call to ask how your coworker’s day is going, how their weekend was, or for just asking how they are coping in general. If your workplace doesn’t have regular video/phone meetings, it might even be worth scheduling a phone call break with a friend or co-worker throughout your day anyway. 

This is actually extremely important for everyone involved, as we are all in this together, and taking this time can overall positively impact your organization’s well-being.

3. Distractions – they happen! Forgive yourself.

Whether you have children or family interrupting your work flow, social media notifications blowing up your phone, or you simply just can not focus on the work in front of you, distractions are inevitable – especially while working from home. The important thing is to not get too hung up on them when they do happen. 

Sometimes all you need to do is take a minute to centre yourself and refocus, while other times you have to completely switch tasks and come back to that one later. Either way, self forgiveness is essential in this respect. Just remember that almost everyone else is in the same boat, and distractions happen at physical workspaces too… don’t beat yourself up over them.

4. Hydrate – like… right now!

We know you remember to drink your coffee/tea/caffeinated beverage in the morning (and afternoon. Well, pretty much all hours of the day… let’s be real) but let’s not forget the most important beverage! That good ol’ H20! So do it… Drink your water. Right now. You’ll thank me later!

5. Turn off your work self.

When the day is done and it is time to switch off, it may be wise to set a daily routine intention to move from your work self to your home self. This means to purposefully do an activity or two every day to switch off – whether that means going for a walk or drive after work, changing out of work attire, or simply taking a few moments to shut down your computer for the evening. 
This will help your brain wind down for the day, and can help with that tricky work-life balance that so many of us struggle with, especially while working from home.

Motivating Your Staff Post SOE

It’s back to work for a lot of businesses on the Avalon that have been shut down for more than a week. In saying that some employees will have a difficult time getting back into the routine, so here a few tips that can help with the transition.

1. Plan a team meeting

Plan a meeting for Monday morning, start by allowing employees to share their storm war stories. Once that is done review tasks, deadlines and weekly goals so you can set a plan. Create focus by getting everyone together.

2. Prioritize task

You may be coming back to a large to do list. Set your priorities and avoid becoming overwhelmed by trying to do everything at once.

3. Give employees time

Managers need to give employees time to adjust. Don’t expect everyone to be at full capacity, so do what you can to help them get back into the motions. Offer more breaks or opportunities to recover because everyone needs time to get back into the swing of things.

4. Create positivity

Leaders need to create a positive workplace during the first week back. Provide guidance and support so employees can surpass anxiety or negativity. Some employees are coming back to work exhausted, emotional and even checked out. Be intuitive and sensitive to this transition because it isn’t an easy one. Improve your communication and provide extra support.

5. Welcome back event

Plan a welcome back breakfast, lunch or coffee break. Provide welcome back cards or individual messages to your employees. Make the day a positive one so employees can get excited to be back to work.

Some workplace will be a little slower to get going while others will be playing catch up and have double the workload. Whatever the case may be your employees will have mixed feelings and emotions about coming back. Its up to you to set the stage and provide support so everyone can get back to success.